A worthwhile buy for anyone trying to make more eco-conscious fashion choices.
Eco-friendly product and packaging
Inclusive size range
Limited colour range
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Looking to make more planet-friendly fashion choices? It doesn’t get much greener than the Pretty Polly Eco-Wear Leggings. We’ve put them through their paces with real-life testing to give you all the information you need to decide whether they are the best leggings for you, so you can buy with confidence.
These leggings are made from a lightweight, barely there fabric, which is super stretchy. We love the minimal seams and label-free design, and the fact they biodegrade 10 times more quickly than the average pair of pantyhose.
SHOP NOW: Pretty Polly Eco-Wear Leggings, £28
Pretty Polly Eco-Wear Leggings specifications
- RRP: £20
- Sizes: SM-XL
- Composition: 93% polyamide, 7% elastane
- Machine washable? Yes
‘Buy better, buy less’ is the fashion mantra of the moment and what better to spend your money on than a pair of biodegradable leggings?
Giving the ultimate wardrobe staple a planet-friendly refresh, Pretty Polly has managed to create a pair of leggings that not only are a joy to wear, but won’t contribute to clogged-up landfill sites when you’ve eventually worn them out.
Taking everything they know about crafting hardworking hosiery and applying it to clothing, these stretchy delights feel more like tights than leggings. The silky soft fabric is pleasing to touch and wear, hugging and honing your frame for a smooth, streamlined silhouette.
Speaking about the launch, Caroline Wright, hosiery product manager at Pretty Polly, said, “We are passionate about making a real difference for the future and believe that sustainable options should be accessible to everybody. That is why we have designed the Eco-Wear range to offer highly wearable, good value, everyday comfort. We already have plans in place to extend the range next season with more styles, colours and larger sizes.”
Much of the appeal of these leggings is in the lightweight, barely there fabric. Team that with minimal seams and label-free design, and it’s clear we’re on to a winner.
If you’re looking for a thick, sturdy pair of leggings, these aren’t for you. They're definitely not the warmest leggings we've tried. But if you’re after a comfort-focused layering piece that’s kind to the planet, read on.
The key selling point is, of course, the 93% biodegradable fabric.
Every pair of Pretty Polly Eco-Wear Leggings has been carefully crafted from the world’s first biodegradable polyamide yarn and produced in a certified ‘Made in Green’ factory in Italy.
The small amount of elastane used in the waistband is not currently biodegradable, but Pretty Polly has assured us it’s something they’re working on.
According to the experts who made the leggings, once properly disposed of the polyamide yarns will biodegrade in just three years. That’s more than 10 times quicker than the average pair of tights (which can take up to 40 years to break down), including those made out of recycled fibres.
But don’t worry, this won’t shorten the lifespan of your leggings.
Quick to dispel any fears of ending your day in rags, the disclaimer on the Pretty Polly website reads: “Our eco-wear products will not biodegrade while you wear them. This process only happens when the item reaches landfill.” Phew.
There’s very little to say about the design of these fuss-free leggings, but that’s the beauty of them. Boasting just one soft seam, they won’t leave pesky lines across your skin, nor will they dig in during the day. Whether you’re out and about or bingeing on a boxset, niggle-free comfort is guaranteed. Just the type of leggings we all need in our lives.
Gently elasticated cuffs help keep the legs in place, while the wide, elasticated waistband ensures your leggings don’t start to inch down as you wear them. The latter works a little like shapewear, too, creating a smooth line across your stomach.
As previously mentioned, these are lightweight leggings, and while they might be comfortingly opaque across calves and thighs, they didn’t pass the VPL test. I wore mine with seam-free, black briefs and found they were clearly visible at the back beneath the semi-sheer fabric.
While that would put me off wearing them in place of trousers with a short top, the Pretty Polly Eco-Wear Leggings still work well with longer-line, bum-covering pieces.
Wear yours under a mini dress or layered beneath an oversized shirt or tunic. If you did want to team your leggings with something cropped, counteract the shorter length at the back with a cardigan or blazer.
Are the Pretty Polly Eco-Wear Leggings true to size?
As each of the three sizes spans three dress sizes, I was concerned that the Pretty Polly Eco-Wear Leggings wouldn’t provide a brilliant fit. However, the super-stretchy fabric helps them to spring back into shape.
Unfortunately, creating an eco-friendly end product is just the beginning when it comes to becoming a more sustainable brand and I’m pleased to report that Pretty Polly has made meaningful changes across the board.
All Eco-Wear products come packaged in a fully recyclable, fully biodegradable cardboard box, with small plastic stickers used only for sizing information and the bar code. Online customers can expect to receive their orders in biodegradable wraps instead of the bulky boxes some brands are guilty of using.
Finally, Pretty Polly has committed to using the lowest possible amounts of energy during manufacturing. A giant leap in the right direction.
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Jess Beech is an experienced fashion and beauty editor, with more than eight years experience in the publishing industry. She has written for woman&home, GoodtoKnow, Now, Woman, Woman’s Weekly, Woman’s Own and Chat, and is a former Deputy Fashion & Beauty Editor at Future PLC. A beauty obsessive, Jess has tried everything from cryotherapy to chemical peels (minus the Samantha in Sex and The City-worthy redness) and interviewed experts including Jo Malone and Trinny Woodall.
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